2013 Team Outlook: New England Patriots
WR Danny Amendola, NE - Solid/Safe Pick
Update 10-20-2013 - After missing a game with a concussion, looks like Amendola will be back in action this week
(Update 10-5): Although tight end Rob Gronkowski appears likely to miss yet another game, the Patriots think they will get at least one of their leading receivers back from injury this week. According to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald, the Patriots "remain highly optimistic" that wide receiver Danny Amendola will play Sunday against the Bengals. Amendola hasn't played since Week 1 due to torn adductor muscles, but he practiced on a limited basis all week, and the reports on how he has looked in practice have been encouraging.
Update September 11, 2013 - Amendola hasnt practiced with his groin injury and looks unlikely to play in week 2.
Out goes Wes Welker, in comes Danny Amendola. The Patriots hope it is simply that easy and if Amendola can stay healthy, it really might be that simple. But that's a big if, as Amendola has struggled to stay healthy over his career. Missing 22 games over his first 4 seasons. In his 1 full season, Amendola caught 85 passes for 689 yards and 3 TDs. Amendola has a very similar skill set to Welker and might even be faster, so if healthy he should catch at least 85 passes for 1000 yards and 5 TDs. Obviously he shouldn't be drafted as high as Welker would have been, but he should definitely be drafted as a #2 WR, *if healthy, he could put up good numbers -- especially in PPR leagues).
WR Aaron Dobson, NE - Sleeper (undervalued)
Update September 7 2013 - Dobson has been ruled out week 1 due to injury.
The Patriots drafted Dobson out of Marshall, because he was fast and big (something they have been missing since they traded Randy Moss -- by the way, also went to Marshall). The Patriots love going deep and looking for the big play. If Dobson can be anything like Moss in the first few seasons with New England, the Patriots' offense will be even more dangerous. Follow Dobson's progression through camp and see if he is able to take hold of the #2 spot on the depth chart that is right there waiting for him.
WR Kenbrell Thompkins, NE - Sleeper (undervalued)
From undrafted due to off the field issues (including seven arrests prior to the age of twenty), to a major threat in New England's offense in just over a couple of months. That's the magical ride Kenbrell Thompkins, 25, is on. Camp observers are calling Thompkins a breakout candidate this 2013 season. He's able to run a variety of routes right out of the gate and has shown soft hands that could hint he'll play an important role for this offense. Keep an eye on him.
Update: 8/23: Impressive. That's the word that sums up Kenbrell Thompkins' performance thus far in the pre-season. The other word that comes to mind is upside. With Tom Brady at QB, Thompkins' stock is soaring in fantasy drafts. When names like Chris Givens and DeAndre Hopkins are being called, you should be thinking Kenbrell Thompkins. Consider him as a WR4 with tremendous upside.
WR Josh Boyce, NE - Super Sleeper (high risk/potential)
Boyce was also picked by New England in this year's draft, but won't be able to practice for a while due to a pre-draft injury. Once healthy, he should compete for time at WR, with a lack of depth at the position. Stay tuned for how he recovers from his injury.Injury Status: Out - Ankle
WR Michael Jenkins, --- - Low Potential
Update 8/15/2013 - Jenkins has been released by the Pats.
Signed in the off season from the Vikings. Will likely be battling Donald Jones for a roster spot. Don't see him making much of a difference.
WR Donald Jones, --- - Low Potential
Update July 23-2013 - Jones was cut by the Patriots to allow more playing time for the younger guys.
Signed in the off season from the Bills. Will likely be battling another free agent the Pats brought in, Michael Jenkins, for a roster spot. Doubtful either makes much of a difference, but watch the training camp battle.
TE Rob Gronkowski, NE - Stud (low risk)
Update October 25, 2013 - Gronk dinally made his long awaited return and while he didnt catch any touchdowns, he was still very effective.. He is now a must start every week
Update September 7, 2013 - While Gronk is making great progress, he will NOT play in week 1. It is possible he plays in week 2, but let us wait and see.
Update August 31, 2013 - Gronk is off the PUP, and making his way back to playing. Look for him to be active any time from week 3 on.
Update June 20, 2013 - Gronkowski has undergone 2 surgeries (forearm and Back) over the past month and there is a chance he isn't ready for the start of the season. Pay close attention to this story. We Will update closer to the season.
Gronkowski is an absolute beast, and when he is healthy, there really isn't anyone who can keep up with him (especially around the end zone). Gronk has scored 38 touchdowns over his first 3 seasons and that includes missing 5 games last year. Gronk's numbers, when healthy, are comparable to any top WR so he should be drafted accordingly. Gronk is scheduled for 2 more off season surgeries, but he should be ready for training camp and if he is, he needs to be drafted in the first few rounds as the #1 TE or even WR in leagues where TEs can be started as receivers. Only thing that could hold Gronk back is his health, so follow how he is doing in training camp.Injury Status: Injured Reserve